i used 2 recipes in preparing today’s lengthy gumbo. one is from a famous new orleans restaurant that got destroyed by katrina called uglesiches & bon appetit. using shrimp & andouille sausage. according to the new orleans recipe the roux needs about an hour to brown deeply. i’m using cubanello peppers instead of boring green peppers, clam juice & file! fresh okra, which has to be browned seperatly until it is no longer stringy. it takes a long time, because the roux is an hour + ordeal (a friend told me to make a big batch & freeze it, slice it off as needed-very smart however…i do not have a freezer. outside might work) i was nervous because the chicken stock made the last 2 days has chinese 5 spice, which means anise. anyways, lots of chopping, paying attention to the roux which can burn, etc etc etc.. i kind of enjoy making food that takes a long time.

making native new orleans food is one way of visiting without leaving home. i just finished another book about katrina that really crushed my heart. zeitoun was about a very sweet muslim couple. the wife left with their 3 kids before the storm. the husband stayed behind & rode it out. he went around in his canoe & helped save people & fed dogs. then he got thrown in jail accused of being taliban. with hundreds of other innocent people he was held without being given even a phone call. it’s always interesting to read about what really went on in new orleans during katrina. a lot of people lost their rights & freedom. makeshift jails were created by prisoners a few days before the storm. while other people were not saved. the military went in & did nothing. they just stood around with their guns & let people die.